(NewsNation Now) — A new study by researchers at Stanford University and the Monterrey Bay Aquarium found the great white shark population off the northern California coast is growing — and that’s a good thing.
For some people, it’s terrifying to think of sharks circling close to beaches, especially as millions of Americans plan to kick off summer.
But researchers say their modestly rising numbers are actually a sign the larger ecosystem is doing well.
“If we have these marine systems that can support a healthy population of apex predators it means those marine systems themselves are healthy, so it’s a good sign that we’re doing the right thing on our coastal systems,” Oregon State University Professor Dr. Taylor Chapple said.
Chapple said the probability of interacting with a great white shark has actually gone down by 90% over the past 60 years, and the drive to the beach is still more dangerous than the sharks in the water.
“I’ve been in the water with sharks for thousands of hours, and I’ve never had a negative interaction,” he said.